WIT Press

Islamic Architecture: Between Moulding And Flexibility


Free (open access)





Page Range

49 - 59




1,121 kb

Paper DOI



WIT Press


M. F. Mahmoud, M. I. Elbelkasy


Islamic architecture reflects the cultural variations of Islamic societies and expresses the cultural movements of these societies. At the same time, it preserves the identity by taking into account the social and environmental properties and artistic constituents. Contemporary global variables (globalization) increase Islamic countries’ challenges to keep the Islamic architecture identity which is confined to (tradition and originality), (contemporary and modernism) or forms which were produced in the past and didn’t express the meaning of it. The research will discuss the dilemma between form and meaning in Islamic architecture, and it will try to answer an important question: could architectural thinking emerge from Islam (come from Islamic sharia) or not? Answering this question will make a real flexible Islamic architecture consider the identity, social and cultural properties of a variable community. The main aim of the research is to analyse harmony between the Islamic architectural elements and sharia and how can we apply it to our modern architecture to show the flexibility of these elements, which are not dependent on one mould. The study is based on a theoretical and applied analytical approach where the theoretical study deals with the theory of Islamic architecture, Islamic architectural elements, the signification of Islamic architecture and the dilemma between physical and spirit. The applied analytical approach analyses modern architecture projects using Islamic architectural elements to show the flexibility of these elements and finally results, recommendations, and conclusion.


Islamic architecture, moulding, flexibility, architectural elements